Health and Retirement Study
The University of Michigan Health and Retirement Study (HRS) is a longitudinal panel study that surveys a representative sample of approximately 20,000 Americans over the age of 50 every two years. Supported by the National Institute on Aging and the Social Security Administration, the HRS explores the changes in labor force participation and the health transitions that individuals undergo toward the end of their work lives and in the years that follow.
Since its launch in 1992, the study has collected information about income, work, assets, pension plans, health insurance, disability, physical health and functioning, cognitive functioning, and health care expenditures. Through its unique and in-depth interviews, the HRS provides an invaluable and growing body of multidisciplinary data that researchers can use to address important questions about the challenges and opportunities of aging. Survey responses for Medicare recepients are linked to Medicare Claims Data, providing a more extensive analytic data set.
All HRS respondents who are Medicare beneficiaries are asked to provide their identification number; over 80% consent to do so. Of those who provided an identification number, 98% have been successfully matched to Medicare files. Information obtained thought HRS are self-report data.